As part of our visiting Musicians and Masterclass series, we were delighted to welcome Harry the Piano to Abingdon to give a series of masterclass, workshops and a fantastic evening concert. Harry commenced his day with a workshop at the Prep school which was swiftly followed by an academic session focusing on harmony and improvisation. Pupils had the opportunity to perform with Harry in afternoon masterclasses whilst also learning about the technique of improvisation. Harry’s evening performance was simply awe-inspiring and four pupils, Anson, Samuel, Thomas and Harrison, had the opportunity to perform with Harry in the concert. We can’t wait to welcome him back!

Harry gave his view on the day: ‘I have been giving workshops and lectures on the subject of piano improvisation for twenty five years in over fifty different schools and colleges and was recently invited to Abingdon School by Director of Music, Richard Stafford. Over five hour-long sessions ranging from the Prep school up to A Level composition, the levels of engagement and knowledge displayed by the students was truly remarkable and the evident camaraderie and positivity of the entire teaching department a real joy to experience. A smaller group of students volunteered to improvise with me for the first time in front of a large audience in the evening and the results were simply astonishing. There really is hope for music education in British schools if this kind of approach can be replicated nationwide: bravo Abingdon!’

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